I have been participating in Carly Marie's Capture Your Grief photo challenge. You can read about this challenge here. This challenge of course goes in hand with Infant and Pregnancy Loss Month, the specific day being October 15th.
Instead of overloading my blog with 31 posts, I thought I'd break mine into weeks.
Day 1: Sunrise
Day 2: Self portrait before grief
This was a hard one. It's always hard for me to go back and look at the ill prepared stefanie.
The stefanie who didn't see this life coming.
The woman I never thought I'd be.
The mother who parents an angel.
You can read more about those feelings here.
Day 3: Self portrait after grief
I chose a picture of me at Faith's Lodge placing Sam's painted heart rock at the base of a tree near the bridge. I can remember those feelings the emerged when I looked around at the hundreds of other rocks thinking, I'm just like all of these other moms that have painted a rock for their dead child/baby.
We are a part of the same group. The community that no one wanted to ever enter.
This is a picture of me 6 months after Sam was born and died. It was also the same week we found out we were pregnant with Vivianna.
We were entering a new state of grief.
Day 4: Treasured item
This one was hard too. You see, when you bury your baby that you never really got to know you treasure everything the has to do with them. There are lots of things I treasure that have to do with Sam.
To name a few…
His green hat he wore in the hospital
His shirt he wore in the hospital that still have his blood stains on it.
His hospital bracelet.
His clothes he never got to wear.
His room he never got to sleep in.
His hand and foot prints.
Everything that's little boy in this house is Sam.
Proof that he is real.
Proof that he lived. (Remember in IL babies that are stillborn do not get a birth certificate, proving life)
This picture especially gives me all of that because it brings me right back to holding him,
touching him. God, what I would give to touch him again!
Day 5: Memorial
For this I chose a photo of us, again at Faith's Lodge, this time it was for a tree planting. The tree planting was to fill the grounds Faith's with new life after a devastating storm in July of 2011. Kind of ironic that families were there to plant new life in memory of a life that ended too soon.
This tree was the first "memorial" that we did for Sam. Since then we have planted an identical tree in our back yard.
Faith's Lodge means so much to us. We love to give back to them when ever we can or visit.
Day 6: What NOT to say
I have been blessed with mostly kind words or actions. Very rarely have I encounter a stupid comment or disrespectful re/action.
Then there's this statement, "You're SO strong!"
I hate it!
I'm not really sure why that statement bothers me so much. But what I do know is that it is mostly said to me when I am weak or when I want to be weak and swallowed by my grief (because some days I just want to be sad). Or maybe because I feel like its because of that strength my son died.
I'm not strong.
I'm only surviving until the day comes that I get to hold my son again.
Day 7: What to say
There nothing sweeter than hearing his name.
Writing his name.
Talk about him. It doesn't make me sad.
What does is when you are afraid to say his name or don't say his name st all.
You'll see. I can have conversations about my son without tears.
I'm a proud mommy of an angel after all.
I just parent from a different side of heaven.